Because National Affiliation is required for firms to apply for the Student-run Firm Awards, directors have been doing a lot of work to achieve this status. Below are answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding National Affiliation to help out during the application process.
Q. What is National Affiliation?
A. National Affiliation is status for which student-run firms can apply if they meet certain standards. Being Nationally Affiliated gives those firms access to certain benefits, as well as a level of prestige.
Q. What are the standards/requirements?
So many of the firms that exist are well established in their connections, professionalism and structure. These are the very requirements a firm must meet in order to achieve Nationally Affiliated status. The application process is explained fully here http://www.prssa.org/resources/firmStandards.aspx.
Q. What does National Affiliation cost to firms?
A. NOTHING! There is no cost to apply and PRSSA does not require any commission, dues or any other fee once the status is granted.
Q. What are the benefits of National Affiliation?
A. Student-run firms who are Nationally Affiliated are not only recognized as the most prestigious firms in the society, but also have access to a client referral system. Additionally, they qualify to apply for the “Best Campaign” and “Best Tactic” student-run firm awards. In time, PRSSA hopes to increase the number of awards available and Nationally Affiliated firms will continue to be the only firms that qualify.
Q. Can I apply for this year’s student-run firm awards if I become Affiliated now?
A. Sadly, no. The deadline for qualification for this year’s awards has passed, but National Affiliation is still an option for your firm! Achieving this status will allow you to apply next year, as well as start reaping the rewards upon the acceptance of your application.
Q. Who should apply?
A. All firms that consider themselves connected, professional and structurally sound. So many established student-run firms already meet the standards we have developed; they simply need to apply for official affiliation. I encourage you to apply before the school year begins so you can start the year with a new status which will bring a renewed sense of professionalism to your group. I also encourage you to come to me with any questions, concerns, comments or suggestions you have regarding student-run firms, the application process or National Affiliation.
This is a guest post from Vice President of Professional Development Therese Kuster.